Microsoft has announced a “10-year commitment” to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo consoles once it completes acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Xbox head Phil Spencer shared the news on Twitter, adding that the company will continue to offer the popular FPS franchise on Steam simultaneously after the merger is completed.
Back in October, Spencer had voiced his enthusiasm to see more Call of Duty titles on Nintendo devices. The last time that happened was with Call of Duty: Ghosts which was released on the Nintendo Wii U. Spencer had said Xbox plans to treat “Call of Duty like Minecraft,” and by the looks of it, that’s now happening.
A Ploy to Convince Regulators?
The Call of Duty franchise has been in the center of attention as Microsoft makes a move to acquire the studio that publishes the game, with many wondering how Microsoft will treat the franchise and its future on PlayStation.
The latest in the series, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II has been released on PlayStation.
The company is yet to strike a deal with Sony, which is its primary competitor in the gaming consoles space. However, Microsoft has said it is open to hammering a deal with Sony, with Spencer going on to say that Xbox is ready to ship Call of Duty on PlayStation “as long as there’s a PlayStation to ship to.”
All Eyes on Microsoft-Activision Merger
Microsoft’s announcement of acquiring Activision for a whopping $69 billion, which is one of the largest gaming studios has led to controversy and mudslinging, with government bodies across the world sitting up and taking notice. The deal is presently being investigated by the US Federal Trade Commission, UK’s Competition and Markets Authority and more.
The primary fear out of the deal is that it will create a monopoly, and stifle competition in the video games market with two of the biggest players coming together. Sony fears that it will be cut off from offering the popular Call of Duty franchise to PlayStation users with Xbox making it exclusive to its platform.
Meanwhile, Sony Shies Away From Microsoft’s Deal
So it comes as no surprise then that Microsoft is now trying to prove that will not be the case with the Nintendo deal. The announcement of continuing to offer the franchise on Steam is also a way to assuage regulators that such a monopoly situation will not arise.
Microsoft is also open to a 10-year deal with Sony, making that commitment publicly, but there has been no approach from Sony to finalize the deal. Microsoft and Activision expect the acquisition to be completed by June 2023, following the necessary regulatory approvals.
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